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Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jul 17, 2023.

What is Blepharitis?

Harvard Health Publishing

Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids that involves the edges of the eyelids and eyelash hair follicles. Blepharitis is a common and sometimes long-lasting condition that usual affects adults, but also can occur in children.

People with skin conditions such as rosacea, seborrhea, oily skin, dandruff or dry eyes are more likely to get this condition.

Blepharitis can be triggered by bacterial infections or by the eyelid glands making too much oil.  This condition is not contagious.


The symptoms of blepharitis can include any or all of the following:


Your doctor can diagnose blepharitis based on your symptoms and an examination of your eyelids.

Expected duration

Blepharitis is often a chronic (long-lasting) condition. It is difficult to cure permanently. In most cases, however, the right treatment reduces the symptoms and controls the condition. In addition, symptoms can change over time and disappear for extended periods — months or years — before returning.


Good eyelid hygiene can help to prevent blepharitis and usually can control the condition if you have it.


The key treatment for blepharitis is good eyelid hygiene. The following cleansing regimen is recommended twice daily, in the morning and the evening. Once the condition is under control, you can do this cleaning less often. However, you should resume twice-daily cleaning if the symptoms return. To clean your eyelids:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

When to call a professional

Call your doctor if you develop:


Most cases of blepharitis improve promptly once the appropriate treatment is started. Often treatment must be continued for a long time or repeated from time to time. Blepharitis does not cause permanent damage to sight.

Additional info

American Academy of Opthalmology

National Eye Institute

Learn more about Blepharitis

Treatment options

Care guides

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.